Domestic Abuse affects everyone in the family in different ways. It can be hard to talk about what is happening to you. It can be difficult to make sense of it.
One of the most effective ways to help you children is by keeping yourself safe.
Talk to your children. Be as honest as you can about the situation without frightening them. Reassure them that the abuse is not their fault and that they are not responsible for the behaviour of your partner. If you choose to stay in a refuge our Child Workers provide support and activities for children. Refuge can be a very positive experience for children. They are safe, they have the opportunity to meet other children in a similar situation to them, they can talk about their experiences to each other and they can begin to understand that they are not alone.
Children can be helped to come to an understanding of their situation. Support is also provided for children and young people whose mothers are using the outreach service.
Women’s Aid understand the impact domestic abuse can have on children and young people and aim to provide a service to meet each of their complex and individual needs. Detailed information on services available through out Northern Ireland can be found in Our Place – Safe Space: Directory of Children and Young People Services in Northern Ireland.
We provide a range of age appropriate specialised services, including:
- Outreach support
- Group work
- One-to-one support
- Personal development programmes
- Prevention programmes
Women’s Aid in England have created a website called The Hideout children and young people can go if they want answers to questions such as:
- What is abuse?
- Is it happening to me?
- What can I do?
Other places you can go to talk or for help:
If at any time you or a member of your family is in danger and needs help – dial 999. Ask for the police and tell them what is happening. If you are unable to talk, use the Silent Solution. Call 999, stay on the line and wait for a prompt by the operator, then press 55. This will alert the operator that you need help but are unable to talk.